[Discuss] Misuse of "Open Hardware" term?

Tsvetan Usunov, OLIMEX Ltd usunov at olimex.com
Fri Feb 20 05:57:58 UTC 2015

The bottom line is to answer the question: Can I make, modify, 
distribute, and use this thing?

If just PDF schematic is available the answer is no and there is no 
ground for further interpretations :)


On 02/19/2015 10:36 PM, Drew Fustini wrote:
> Thanks for the great discussion in this thread.  I wanted to follow up
> on the Linaro 96boards.org "Open Hardware" issue.  I just watched this
> talk from LinaroConnect and
> I am frustrated by the comment of Linaro CEO George Grey that it
> depends on what one's definition of Open Source Hardware is:
> http://youtu.be/e8_MatJ_VR0?t=15m30s
> (seek to 15min 30sec)
> It seems as if his argument is that there a lot of definitions and its
> all in the eye of the beholder.  I suppose this is an attitude that
> OSHWA members come across at times.  I take heart in the fact that
> OSHWA is committed to raising awareness of the precise definition and
> best practices.
> cheers,
> drew
> On Tue, Feb 10, 2015 at 5:13 PM, Drew Fustini <pdp7pdp7 at gmail.com> wrote:
>> Exciting news this week out of the LinaroConnect conference in Hong
>> Kong about new low-cost ARM 64-bit dev board and the introduction of
>> 96boards.org.  However, I am concerned that Linaro and 96boards are
>> using "Open Hardware" to describe hardware for which only schematics
>> are offered.  Here are examples:
>> 1) Press Release states: "96Boards is an open hardware specification"
>> https://www.linaro.org/news/linaro-announces-96boards-initiative-accelerate-arm-software-development/
>> 2) 96Boards.org website displays in a big font on its homepage: "32-
>> and 64-bit ARM Open Hardware Boards": https://www.96boards.org/
>> 3) LinaroConnect Opening Keynote:
>> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6aAFNCUUVj4  (seek to 42:40)
>> George Grey, Linaro CEO, explains that they have created an "Open
>> hardware platform specification"
>> I have only found schematics on the 96boards.org website, and it does
>> not appear the PCB board layout or BOM are required to be released for
>> the 96boards branded products.  The first real product, the 8-core ARM
>> 64-bit HiKey by CircuitCo, offers only a schematic.  Social media
>> conversations with Linaro engineers (who are awesome guys in their own
>> right) reinforce this assessment:
>> https://plus.google.com/u/0/+gregkroahhartman/posts/LkfitGPTU5h
>> a) Do we as an Open Source Hardware Association care about the term
>> "Open Hardware"?
>> b) If so, do we feel that Linaro & 96boards is using the term "Open
>> Hardware" incorrectly?  Is there a less ambiguous way to phrase "Open
>> hardware platform specification"?
>> thanks!
>> drew
>> http://keybase.io/pdp7
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